Tuesday, August 21, 2007

The Culture All Around Us...

I was driving today, in a Subaru no less, between Pueblo, CO and Colorado Springs. Off to my right, and damn me for not having a camera, on the side of the road was a dumped over Caterpillar "digger" of some sort. They had police, fire trucks, a crowd of people and a large tow truck trying to right the thing. (Poor fucking engineering if you ask me :) )...

I thought for a minute of the crap I see out on the road. Wrecks... disasters... homeless people begging for money in some far out places... Hotels with grown men who look like me walking from their rooms down to meetings or the Bennigan's down the street.

It's all sales reps.

Guys who fly, drive and teleconference to their customers on a daily basis.

There is a culture to it. Also lots and lots of patterns. For example... the flow of traffic threw an airport is an amazing thing to watch. Guys with their roller bags, with computer bag on top, sport jacket crumpled threw the handle. Walking and sometimes running like I did today when I ditched my wife hanging on the phone. "Gotta go!!! CLICK!!!" The train was moving man!! But the train threw airport is what's funny. The sales guys huddle near the exit of the train, where the vacationers are scattered. The sales guys walk up escalators. The vacationers stand and hold the rail. We got our place to go.

The hotel is interesting. You check in. Present your rewards cards. Nothing funnier than presenting your Hilton Card to Marriott property or vice versa. Pass the credit card, get your keys and head to the room. Coming down the elevator is a sales guy in his jogging shorts and wrinkled t-shirt either out for a run or for a bite to eat at the diner next door. As you pass the guy, you are like...that's me after I check email. Email can suck at this point. When you have been on the road all day, you have no idea if there is 10 emails or 50.

Rinse, lather, repeat... every week. It's really a culture. Dockers. Men's Wearhouse jackets. Eccos. Mid 30's to mid 50's. Road warriors in rental cars...

I cannot imagine what America spends to keep it's sales people on the road. It's cottage industry. Hotels, staff, laundry, cleaning supplies, food service, janitorial, and most importantly, the staff (again) who work menial jobs folding sheets, washing towels, checking you into the hotel, the management team... the shit goes on and on.

Power ball at $245 Million... I'm going to win.

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